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Tag archives for business cards

Here’s a summary of the series of posts on the Top 10 Business Networking Tips:

  1. Know Your Objectives
  2. Update Your Business Card
  3. Join Groups
  4. Turn Contacts Into a Network
  5. Make Notes About Each New Contact
  6. Follow-Up With New Contacts
  7. Managing Your Contacts
  8. Remembering To Keep In Contact With Your Contacts
  9. Give Speeches To Groups
  10. Host An Event

Start with #1 and work your way through the list. When you reach #9 and #10 you’ll find that networking has become much easier — and more valuable.

Business cards have been part of business forever. But, the Internet finally has applications that reduce the need for business cards.

Laurie Percival mentioned that while at the SXSW conference she used Contxts, a new SMS-based service that shares business card information with someone by just sending their mobile phone number to an SMS “short code.”

There are many times when you don’t have business cards to give to a new acquaintance. You might be at a conference and run out. Or, you might be at such a casual location that your business cards aren’t handy. Both seem to occur a lot at SXSW!

There are two ways to use Contxts. One way is to send your contact’s mobile phone number to Contxts and they will send your business card information to your contact’s mobile phone. Or, your contact can text your user ID to Contxts at 50500 and retrieve your business card data via SMS.

One of the extra benefits of Contxts is that you can list all of your favorite social media addresses in your profile, which you couldn’t include on a paper business card.

Contxts won’t replace paper business cards, but as they add features it should reduce the keying of new contacts into a contact manager.

I’m always pleasantly surprised when I come across someone’s Top Networking Tips list that includes tips I hadn’t seen before. Richard Mueller, a Minneapolis-based graphic designer, has also posted his networking tips. Here’s a quick summary:

  1. Big groups are always better
  2. Drag singles along
  3. Don’t dance with the one you brung
  4. Nicotine Networking for nonsmokers
  5. Plan fast, eat slowly
  6. Use other peoples’ business cards for notes
  7. Organize your business card collection
  8. How to remember names
  9. How to remember faces
  10. Don’t drop the ball – use your new contacts

Test these tips and select the ones that are right for you — and do more of what works for you in your business networking at events.

Here’s a networking tip you’ve probably not seen before. Sloane Berrent from CauseCast was interviewed by Andrew Warner of Mixergy about her networking techniques. Here’s one of the many good networking tips from Sloane’s interview:

Keep a free hand – Events aren’t about the food & drink. If you have food in one hand and a drink in the other, you won’t be able to shake hands with new people.

Sloane is the type of networker who returns from a conference with a 6″ stack of business cards, so listen to the whole interview for more of Sloane’s networking tips.

Networking can occur wherever you are. Like, when you’re on vacation.

Nichelle Stephens points out a few of the places where you may find yourself networking when you may not expect it:

It’s August and many people are away for vacation. This is actually an excellent time to build up your contacts. You will meet other vacationers on the plane, in the hotel lobby or on the beach. Everyone is relaxed so conversations flow freely.

One of the reasons that vacation networking can work well is that you already share some interests in common.

Be sure to pack a few extra business cards along with the sunscreen and bathing suit.

Edith Yeung, who has a very inspirational blog, has posted her 7 Rules of Networking Made Easy:

  • Ask Questions
  • Offer Help
  • Bring Business Cards
  • Write Things Down
  • Set Goal and Practice
  • Follow Up
  • Be Yourself at All Time

Edith’s list is a good reminder of effective networking techniques.

Business cards are the currency of exchange at business networking events. Many people feel they’ve had a successful business networking experience if they’ve collected a lot of business cards — and have given their card to many people.

If business networking were that simple, we would all be tremendously successful!
The best reason to exchange business cards at a networking event is when two people feel there is enough of a connection that it’s worthwhile staying in contact.

While it’s a great to exchange business cards, the key question is whether they can look at your card a few days or weeks later and know why they should call you. If your business card doesn’t answer this question then you may never hear from that person again.

There are several types of information on business cards that can tell what you do and why your contact should call you:

Probably the hardest of these to create–yet the most effective–is a positioning statement slogan that includes two items. First, it identifies the type of customers or clients you serve. Second, it either describes the products or services you provide, or it describes the benefits your customers receive.
Here are examples of positioning slogans for various types of companies to get you started:

  • Providing accounting services to growing entrepreneurs
  • Precision drilling equipment for the aircraft industry
  • Swimming pools for fun and exercise
  • Lamps and shades that light modern homes
  • Community calendar for your events and meetings
  • Turning events into networking experiences

Take a look at your business card and make sure it tells people not only how to contact you, but why they should contact you.

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